I love fall. It’s the perfect time for watching movies and television shows, and it’s football season! So what better way to combine these two than watching movies and TV shows about football? I’ve compiled some of my favorites below, and if you’re a fan of football or just good stories, you should check them out.
Friday Night Lights
Clear Eyes. Full Hearts. Can’t Lose. I’m pretty sure Friday Night Lights will always be my favorite football show. I’ve watched it a million times, but who can resist Tim Riggins and Matt Saracen? Not to mention the wonderful marriage between Eric and Tami Taylor. You don’t have to be a football fan to enjoy Friday Night Lights, but it showcases some of the best things about the sport. Sports bring people who have absolutely nothing in common together to form a bond that can never be broken.
The show is currently streaming on Hulu.
Remember The Titans
I think Remember The Titans is first movie about football that I ever watched. When I first saw it in theatres, I was too young to understand football, but I absolutely loved it. It’s not just about football; it’s about teenagers learning to overcome racism and other struggles and come together as a team not just to play a game, but to truly love each other despite their differences. The friendship that forms between Julius and Gerry is beautiful. And each actor gives a powerful performance especially Denzel Washington.
The Blind Side
The Blind Side is based on the real-life story of Michael Oher (portrayed by Quinton Aaron). It’s an uplifting story about a high schooler who, despite all odds, succeeds in playing college football and ends up going to the NFL. Leigh Ann Tuohy, the woman who takes Michael in, is not afraid to speak her mind especially when it comes to protecting her family. Sandra Bullock is wonderful as this lady (and you should follow the real Leigh Ann Tuohy on social media. She’s hilarious). I could also relate to Leigh Ann because I also hate Tennessee football.
All American begins with Spencer James (Daniel Ezra) switching schools to play for Beverly High and moving in with Coach Baker (Taye Diggs) and his family. It’s very different, and Spencer must quickly learn how to adapt. The show focuses on the friendships Spencer forms with the Baker family and how he tries to balance his family, his old friends from Crenshaw, and his new school. The show is loosely based on the life of Spencer Paysinger, who played in the NFL and won a championship with the Giants.
We Are Marshall
This 2006 film follows the Marshall University football team after a horrific plane crash which killed everyone on board. The Thundering Herd must come together to form a new team while grieving the loss of their coaches and players. Even though it’s a movie about tragedy, it’s also about hope. Matthew McConaughey is brilliant in We Are Marshall and stars along side Matthew Fox.
Brian’s Song is based on the unlikely friendship between Chicago Bear teammates Brian Piccolo and Gale Sayers. The movie details their journey on and off the football field especially after Piccolo is diagnosed with cancer. It’s a beautiful friendship, and if you love bromance, you’ll like this movie. But just a warning: it is a tearjerker. The original version, starring James Caan and Billy Dee Williams, was released in 1971, and it was remade in 2001 with Mekhi Pfeiffer and Sean Maher.
Radio is another inspiring and heartwarming movie. It follows the journey of James “Radio” Kennedy, a young man who struggles with intellectual disabilities, after he is befriended by Harold Jones, the town’s high school football coach. Radio begins serving as the team manager and his life is greatly improved. But Radio also inspires the town. Cuba Gooding Jr. is wonderful as Radio, and if you’re looking for a feel-good movie, I definitely recommend this one.
Last Chance U
This Netflix original follows football players who previously played Division I schools but had to transfer to a junior college because of behavioral or academic problems. The junior college is basically their last chance to prove themselves so they can return to Division I and fulfill their dreams. After watching Last Chance U, I have a new appreciation for professors at junior colleges and what they go through. I’m also a sucker for a good comeback story so I want to root for these football players to succeed.
Friday Night Lights (The Movie)
The Friday Night Lights television series is based on this 2004 film. Friday Night Lights follows the Odessa-Permian Panthers during the 1988 season and has some of the same themes as the show such as overcoming injuries, bringing a team together, and trying to deal with a town obsessed with football. It’s not just about football, but about the men who play the game. If you like the show, then you should definitely give this movie a chance.
Peyton Manning is my favorite football player ever, and this show follows him around as visits former and current NFL players. It’s interesting and funny if you like football, and I’ve learned some things. My favorite episodes are where he visits his dad and Eli.
Peyton’s Places airs on ESPN plus, but ESPN will occasionally show repeats. And if you love Peyton and/or the Mannings, you should also watch The Book of Manning.